Summary: Trinity Sunday
Concordia Lutheran Church
Trinity Sunday, May 30, 2010
The Trinity Is To Be Worshiped!
† IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER, SON AND HOLY SPIRIT †
As the day of Christ approaches, my you be blessed through His word, and may you treasure its content, as it tells you of the grace, the love and the peace of God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, poured out on you through the Spirit!
How dare they say!
We also struggle with this!
Reminiscent of the Jews!
The words sting, and if we are honest, when we first hear them, these ancient words set off warning bells in our minds. They seem too critical, too judgmental, and in this age too intolerant.
We would try to find a way to dismiss them, to by-pass them, and perhaps even ignore them. How could it be that what was taught fourteen to sixteen hundred years ago could be used as a guideline for our churches today, declaring that only those who hold to a certain complex understanding are saved?
For that is what they appear to state, what we a moment ago confessed.
“Whoever desires to be saved must, above all, hold the catholic faith. Whoever does not keep it whole and undefiled will without doubt perish eternally.”
Harsh words, that lead into a creed that is hard to understand until it is taken apart and chewed on, until we examine it closely, and understand what is written. Some of you have only heard those words this morning – so how can you confess them? Most of the rest of us only use them once a year – this particular week, as we celebrate that God revealed Himself to us as both One, and yet Three. The words beg to be considered, yet our hearts struggle with the idea that such a complexity could be so critical to our salvation.
One pastor, a man by the name of Tozer, phrased it this way, “The doctrine of the Trinity … is truth for the heart. The fact that it cannot be satisfactorily explained, instead of being against it, is in its favor. Such a truth had to be revealed; no one could have imagined it.
Grasping our struggle, gives us some insight into the struggle of the Jews, as they tried to grasp that the man teaching them in the temple courtyard was not just a mere man, but completely God. As we struggle through the apparent paradox this morning, may we come to the realization of those who wrote this creed – and with the angels and archangels and all the company that will be gathered in heaven on the day of Christ proclaim God’s holiness, His majesty, His glory. For indeed the “catholic faith is this,
that we worship One God in Trinity and Trinity in Unity,”
The Struggle with Mystery and Paradox! (LAW)
The bigger struggle with not being God!
Demon? Influenced by a Supernatural Spirit?
Who do you make yourself to be?
There is part of each of us, that absolutely hates when we don’t know where we are going, or what we are doing. We don’t like it, when we are not in complete control, when we cannot manipulate our situation in a way we prefer. Such is the reason we hate doctor’s offices, and dread the chair at the dentist, and probably why we don’t like lawyers and judges. These situations include discussions in languages that are beyond our vocabularies, and make decisions we feel we have no active part in. We are helpless.
SO it was with the Jewish people, who thought they needed to confront Jesus because His teaching was so challenging, and yet the miracles seem to call for them to make some kind of judgment. The challenge is that they thought they understood God, after all they studied his word and they had the temple, and they were Jewish and not Samaritans or Gentiles. They did all the right things, they sang all the right psalms, they kept all the festivals, and yet, Jesus will say, “It is my Father who glorifies me, of whom you say, ‘He is our God.’ 55But you have not known him.”
In saying that they don’t know him – Jesus will use a word that is incredibly intimate – focusing on knowledge based on experience. They know of God, and yet they don’t know Him. Should they have been able to process their knowledge, they would have seen their worship vain and empty, they would have realized that Herod’s majestic temple was a sham. Their actions there were but a falsehood designed to appease the God that they claimed to follow.
The God who was standing there, in their midst!
And they would try to kill them, even as He was showing them His plan, for them, and for us. He wasn’t a tame God, and even though the Old Testament scriptures spoke of Him, and His love for them so clearly, they couldn’t wrap their minds around the concept of God walking among them.